June 16: The City of Houston announces the website for all federal holiday commemoration events

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) – On Monday, the city of Houston will make it easier to find details about all of the city’s June 16 celebrations.

Officials will unveil plans to unify the city’s celebrations on the Juneteenth Houston website, which will showcase events in the city’s historic neighborhoods.

Juneteenth recognizes the first day of freedom for enslaved Africans in Texas and commemorates the end of slavery throughout the United States.

The Emancipation Proclamation issued by President Abraham Lincoln freed enslaved people in the Confederate States in 1863. It was a measure intended to punish the Confederacy during the US Civil War and did not cover enslaved Africans in border states.

It also failed to free those held in bondage in Texas. That was not to happen until June 19, 1865, when Union General Gordon Granger landed in Galveston, Texas and issued General Order #3. The popular belief is that enslaved Africans in Texas were unaware of the Emancipation Proclamation until Granger’s announcement.

However, some historians have disputed this claim. You can read more about it here in this story about how the United States came to celebrate June 16th.

In 2021, June 16 became a national holiday. This effort was guided by Texan Opal Leethe ABC13 last year told how she grew up in Marshall as a child before moving to Fort Worth at the age of 10.

But there was one story she’d kept quiet her entire life: the night 500 white rioters forced her family out of their home and set it on fire.

“People didn’t want us. They started gathering. The newspaper said the police could not control the mob. My father came with a gun and the police told them if he broke a hat they would let the mob take us.” Lee recalled. “They started throwing things at the house and as they left they took out the furniture and burned it and burned the house.”

It happened on June 19, 1939. June 16.

But instead of thinking about what happened, she worked to make sure people never forget June 16th.

In 2016, when she was about to turn 90.

In 2020, lawmakers introduced a resolution aimed at recognizing the historical significance of the holiday.

Despite opposition, President Joe Biden signed the June 16 National Independence Day Act into law on June 17, 2021.

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https://abc13.com/juneteenth-houston-website-emancipation-park-federal-holiday-biden-signs/11884990/ June 16: The City of Houston announces the website for all federal holiday commemoration events

Dais Johnston

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